You don't have to be an expert to benefit from meditation, says study

By Amanda Stewart,

A new small study has found that 25 minutes of mindfulness meditation can help a person feel less anxiety in a stressful situation and you don’t have to be an expert on meditation.

This study was published in the journal Psychoneuroendocrinology.

For the study, 31 adults underwent three days of brief training for mindfulness meditation, according to Huffington Post. During the training, participants learned how to monitor their breathing and how to be aware of being in the present moment.

While these 31 adults were being trained in mindfulness meditations, 35 adults were analyzing poetry to boost their problem solving skills.

All of those who were involved in the study were between the ages of 18 and 30, according to Science World Report.
At the end of the three days all participants were put in a stressful situation. They either had to do math or speech related tasks.

Researchers had each participant report how they felt after being put in the stressful situation and then took a saliva sample from each person to measure hormone and cortisol levels.

Those who participated in the mindfulness meditation training reported feeling less stress, but they actually had higher cortisol levels. Researchers say this may be due to the fact that although those who practice mindfulness, they may still need to cognitively work at a task.

"When you initially learn mindfulness mediation practices, you have to cognitively work at it - especially during a stressful task," David Creswell, associate psychology professor said. "And, these active cognitive efforts may result in the task feeling less stressful, but they may also have physiological costs with higher cortisol production."

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